RSS Feed

Tag Archives: healthy

Vegetarian Spinach and Mushroom Lasagna

Posted on

I had something like this recently and it was heavenly. I found this recipe on SimplyRecipes and hope it meets my expectations. I have adjusted it a little to make it Weight Watcher’s friendly. This is 10 servings and 11 WW points. That seems like a lot of points but this can be a full meal in itself rather than separate components. I wouldn’t eat additional bread. If you want to eat a salad with it, that would make it more filling and get you more veggies.

  • 1 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • Salt
  • 1 generous cup of chopped onions
  • 1/8 cup olive oil plus more for keeping the noodles from sticking to each other
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped (about 4 teaspoons)
  • 1 6-ounce can tomato paste
  • 2 cups tomato sauce
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes (I recommend Muir Glen brand with added basil)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 10-ounce boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed in clean towel of excess moisture
  • 1 lb whole wheat lasagna noodles (16 to 20 noodles)
  • 1 15-ounce container of part skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 pound Parmesan, grated (about 1 cup)
  • 12 oz shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
Place mushrooms in a large (6 to 8 quart), sauté pan on high or medium high heat. Stir them with a wooden spoon or shake the pan from time to time. You may hear them squeak. Sprinkle salt over the mushrooms. The mushrooms will sizzle and then start to release water. (Note that you are not adding fat at this point to the pan; this method of cooking mushrooms in their own moisture is called “dry sautéing.) Once the mushrooms start to release water into the pan, stir in the chopped onions. Cook until the mushrooms are no longer releasing moisture and the mushroom water has boiled away, about 5 minutes more.

Add the olive oil to the mushrooms and stir to coat. Sauté the mushrooms and onions for about a minute.  Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Stir in the tomato paste, cook for a minute longer. Reserve 1 cup of the tomato sauce (it will go in the bottom of the casserole dish), and put the remaining cup of tomato sauce into the pot with the mushrooms.  Add the large can of crushed tomatoes.  Add one cup of water. Stir in the thyme, sugar, and red pepper flakes. If you are using dried basil instead of fresh, add it now.  Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat and simmer on a low simmer, for 20 minutes.

Once sauce is simmering, salt the boiling pasta water, and add the dry lasagna noodles to the boiling water.  (The water should be at a vigorous, rolling boil.) Stir gently, making sure that the noodles are not sticking to each other. Set the timer for 8 minutes, or however long is indicated on the package of the noodles. Cook uncovered on a high boil. When the noodles are ready (al dente, cooked through but still firm to the bite), drain the noodles in a colander, and rinse them to cool them with cold water.  As you rinse them, gently separate them with your fingers so they don’t stick to each other. Prepare a couple large cookie sheets or baking sheets by spreading a tablespoon of olive oil over the baking sheets. Place the lasagna noodles on the sheets, gently coating them with a bit of that olive oil, and spreading them out. This will help keep them from sticking to each other while you finish the sauce and prepare the layered casserole.

Turn off the heat on the stovetop for the sauce. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the one cup of reserved tomato sauce over the bottom of a large (preferably 10×15-inch) casserole dish. (If your casserole dish is smaller, you may need to add another layer as you go through this step.) Place a layer of lasagna noodles down over the tomato sauce, slightly overlapping. (For our 10×15-inch dish, we ultimately fit 3 layers of noodles, each layer with 6 noodles.  Then we had 2 extra noodles on which to nosh.) Sprinkle half of the ricotta cheese over the noodles. Sprinkle half of the defrosted, drained, and excess moisture squeezed out spinach over the ricotta.  Sprinkle half of the Mozzarella cheese over the spinach, and just a quarter of the pecorino cheese. Then spoon 1/3 of your mushroom sauce over the Mozzarella. Sprinkle half of the fresh basil over the sauce if using.

Repeat the layering process. Place a second layer of noodles over the sauce. Spread the remaining ricotta, spinach, and Mozzarella over the noodles. Sprinkle another quarter of the pecorino along with the Mozzarella. Top with another third of the mushroom sauce and the remaining fresh basil.  Layer your final layer of lasagna noodles over the sauce. Spread the remaining sauce over the lasagna noodles, and sprinkle with the remaining pecorino or parmesan cheese.

Pull out a sheet of aluminum foil large enough to cover the casserole dish. Spread a little olive oil over the inside of the piece of foil (the side that will have contact with the lasagna). Place the foil over the casserole dish and crimp the edges.

Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes, then remove the foil and bake uncovered for an additional 25 minutes.

Take the lasagna out of the oven when done and let it rest 10 minutes before cutting to serve. Once made, the lasagna will last a week in the fridge.


Veggie & Rice Burritos

Posted on

I have a very similar burrito recipe on here. This one is close but is a little more substantial by adding rice.

4 each tortillas, whole wheat 96% fat free flour
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 each red bell pepper, chopped
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
15 ounces canned black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can green chili peppers, chopped
1/2 cup cooked rice
4 ounces neufchatel cheese (light cream cheese)
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons salsa

1. Wrap tortillas in foil and place in oven heated to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bake for 15 minutes or until heated through.

2. Heat oil in a 10-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Place onion, bell pepper, garlic and chiles in skillet, cook for 2 minutes stirring occasionally. Pour beans into skillet, cook 3 minutes stirring.

3. Mix in cooked rice. Warm rice through.

4. Cut cream cheese into cubes and add to skillet with salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes stirring occasionally.

5. Spoon mixture evenly down center of warmed tortilla and roll tortillas up. Top with salsa. Serve immediately.

4 servings.

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 386 Calories; 14g Fat (31.4% calories from fat); 14g Protein; 52g Carbohydrate; 9g Dietary Fiber; 22mg Cholesterol; 858mg Sodium.

Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 1 1/2 Fat.

Crock Pot White Bean Soup

Posted on

As it gets cooler, I start thinking soup! This sounds delicious and filling. I found this at Budget Bytes and all credit is due to them. I put the recipe through MasterCook to check the calorie count and it is a great number.

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 pound carrots, sliced
4 stalks celery, sliced
1 pound white beans, dry
1 each bay leaf
1 teaspoon rosemary
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
pepper, to taste
6 cups water

1. Add the olive oil, garlic, onion, celery, and carrots to a large (5qt or larger) slow cooker.

2. Sort through the beans and remove any debris or stones. Give them a quick rinse and then add them to the slow cooker, along with the bay leaf, rosemary, thyme, paprika, and some freshly cracked pepper.

3. Add SIX CUPS of water to the slow cooker and stir to combine the ingredients. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours.

4. After 8 hours, stir the soup and mash the beans slightly. Starting with just a ½ tsp, add salt to your liking.

Serves 6.

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 322 Calories; 5g Fat (14.4% calories from fat); 19g Protein; 53g Carbohydrate; 13g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 588mg Sodium.

Exchanges: 3 Grain(Starch); 1 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 1 Fat.

10 Benefits to Drinking Warm Lemon Water Every Morning – Tasty Yummies

Posted on

I have heard about drinking warm lemon water for a while and didn’t know why it was so good for you. Here is why!


10 Benefits to Drinking Warm Lemon Water Every Morning – Tasty Yummies.

April 10, 2014

Posted on

I am a slacker. I admit it. I haven’t been writing here because I have tried to balance everything. It’s not been working so well. The one good thing recently is that I’ve tried to get back on the wagon with healthier eating. Yay me? Yeah, I fell off. It was a hard landing. I was working crazy hours. I wasn’t sleeping well. I wasn’t eating well. I was just functioning. Now I am trying to just get back on track. I have moved towards eating healthier. I have quit eating out so much. I was eating out all the time because it is hard to cook when you have less than 12 hours at home before you have to be back at work. I just wanted food immediately and sleep. Then I wasn’t sleeping well because of the food. Ugh! So I have started cooking up big batches of rice and veggies so I have these meals ready to microwave. It’s easier and more affordable. And tastier! I cook a helluva lot better than McDonalds!

I was also recently inspired by a friend who told me he lost 15 lbs. I was impressed. So I figured if he can, I can get back to it! I’m doing my shakes and eating better and feeling better slowly. It’s not the easiest road. Most of us know that. But it is a process.

Beet Veggie Burger

Posted on

I’ve been looking for a great veggie burger. I found this site that had what looked yummy. Check them for other recipes if you’d like.

3 large beets
1/2 cup brown rice, uncooked
1 medium yellow onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, minced fine
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cans black beans, canned
1/4 cup prunes, finely chopped
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons brown mustard
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 large egg
salt and pepper, to taste
6 each hamburger bun

1. Heat the oven to 400°F. Wrap the beets loosely in aluminum foil and roast until easily pierced with a fork, 50 to 60 minutes. Set aside to cool.

2. Meanwhile, bring a 2-quart pot of water to a boil. Salt the water generously and add the rice. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook the rice until it’s a little beyond al dente. You want it a little over-cooked, but still firm (not completely mushy). This should take about 35 to 40 minutes. Drain the rice and set it aside to cool.

3. Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and a pinch of salt. Stir the onions every minute or two, and cook until they are golden and getting charred around the edges, 10 to 12 minutes. A few wisps of smoke as you are cooking is ok, but if it seems that the onions are burning, lower the heat. A dark, sticky crust should develop on the bottom of the pan.

4. Add the garlic and cook until it is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Pour in the cider vinegar and scrape up the dark sticky crust. Continue to simmer until the cider has evaporated and the pan is nearly dry again. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

5. Process the oats in a food processor until they have reduced to a fine flour. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

6. Drain and rinse one of the cans of beans and transfer the beans to the food processor. Scatter the prunes on top. Pulse in 1-second bursts just until the beans are roughly chopped — not so long that they become mush — 8 to 10 pulses. Transfer this mixture to a large mixing bowl. Drain and rinse the second can of beans and add these whole beans to the mixing bowl as well.

7. Use the edge of a spoon or a paper towel to scrape the skins off the cooled roasted beets; the skins should slip off easily. Grate the peeled beets on the largest holes of a box grater. Transfer the beet gratings to a strainer set over the sink. Press and squeeze the beet gratings to remove as much liquid as possible from the beets. (You can also do this over a bowl and save the beet juice for another purpose.)

8. Transfer the squeezed beets, cooked rice, and sautéed onions to the bowl with the beans. Sprinkle the olive oil, brown mustard, smoked paprika, cumin, coriander, and thyme over the top of the mixture. Mix all the ingredients until combined. Taste the mixture and add salt, pepper, or any additional spices or flavorings to taste. Finally, add the oatmeal flour and egg (if using), and mix until you no longer see any dry oatmeal or egg.

9. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or transfer the mixture to a refrigerator container, and refrigerate the burger mixture for at least 2 hours or (ideally) overnight. The mix can also be kept refrigerated for up to three days before cooking.

10. When ready to cook the burgers, first shape them into burgers. Scoop up about a scant cup of the burger mixture and shape it between your palms into a thick patty the size of your hamburger buns. You should end up with 6 large patties.

11. Heat a cast-iron skillet over high heat. Add a few tablespoons of vegetable oil to completely coat the bottom of the pan. When you see the oil shimmer a flick of water evaporates on contact, the pan is ready.

12. Transfer the patties to the pan. Cook as many as will fit without crowding; I normally cook 3 patties at a time in my 10-inch cast iron skillet.

13. Cook the patties for 2 minutes, then flip them to the other side. You should see a nice crust on the cooked side. If any pieces break off when you flip the burgers, just pat them back into place with the spatula. Cook for another 2 minutes, then cover the pan and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for 4 more minutes until the patties are warmed through. If you’re adding cheese, lay a slice over the burgers in the last minute of cooking.

14. Serve the veggie burgers on soft burger buns or lightly toasted sandwich bread along with some fresh greens.

6 servings.

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 313 Calories; 7g Fat (19.3% calories from fat); 10g Protein; 53g Carbohydrate; 6g Dietary Fiber; 35mg Cholesterol; 443mg Sodium.

Exchanges: 3 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 1/2 Fruit; 1 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Supercheap Superfoods Shopping List | The Dr. Oz Show

Posted on

Eating healthy seems expensive. Here’s a way to do it on the cheap.

Supercheap Superfoods Shopping List | The Dr. Oz Show.